Coop de la Garza (re-purposed from an ugly shed)

  1. Shannys Girls
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    When we decided that we wanted chickens, we opted to re-purpose this ugly shed that was already on the property when we bought it. We just came up with the ideas along the way. Such as, moving it from the back corner where it had always been, and placing it at the opposite side of the yard, to be under the trees. We live in South Texas, so having the shade where I wanted to move it to, I felt would make for happier chickens.

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    After tearing off the siding, we realized that we actually had a really good structural base to start our project with. And I imagine we saved a few hundred dollars by not having to buy the materials to build this much of it.
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    Unfortunately, I didn’t think to have someone take pics of us moving it. But, after attaching 2x4’s to each end, my sister, her 2 sons, my 2 sons, my husband and myself, picked it up and moved it about 125 ft, to it’s current position.

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    We gleaned ideas from a few different pics we found online, but because we were starting with an existing structure, we really just had to wing it. Our goal was to use as much wood & materials that we could from the left overs of previous projects.

    First bit of material I had to actually buy was the linoleum that I found already sold in a roll, like a remnant, $25. I had heard from a few people that having it as a floor surface, instead of wood, would make for a cleaner coop, mostly because liquids of any kind wouldn’t be getting absorbed into the wood.


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    I originally intended to only have 6-8 hens, but thanks to Ideal Poultry and their healthy birds, I have 10, but they can share the 6 nests we decided to build. My mom came up with the idea of creating the ventilation doors, all around the coop. They have chicken wire for the birds’ protection, but allow for air to pass thru during the heat of the day. That’s what the bottom doors are, at the nesting box side of the coop. We will clean and grab eggs from the nests, from the doors that open at the top.


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    I will just upload the pics now, because it's pretty self-explanatory. ( :

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    We dug down about 10" in order to bury/attach aluminum flashing, to hopefully keep predators from digging under.
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    I painted it to match the storage shed that my husband had recently built, which is also where a bunch of the materials came from to build the coop. We bought a kit from Lowe's for the shed, but then decided to upgrade some of the materials. What was not used for the shed, was used for the coop.
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    The stairs have been in our storage unit for years, built and used one time for an outdoor children's event. Pretty cool that they fit our need perfectly, and we didn't plan that!

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    I also stained the bare wood parts with Olympus stain & sealant
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    And now for the future occupants of this abode.
    Here they are 2 days old. I got 2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 EEs, 3 RIRs & 3 Black Astralorp pullets (plus they sent me 9 males to keep the girls warm, I have since found new homes for 7 of those).
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    5 days old...I switched over to using sand as their litter, because from the posts I had seen about it, for South Texas climates, it is going to be a great choice for keep down odors and the ease of cleaning their area.
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    8 days old
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    They were moved to their coop way earlier than I thought they would be, because they were flying in the other area. But, with 2 heat lamps and staying in the coop, closed up, they are fine. Here, they are 16 days old. I'm also using sand inside their coop & run.
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    My husband hadn't had a chance to build their roosts yet, at this point, so I just gave them some logs to climb on, in case the sand felt cold.
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    3 weeks old
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    They love yogart
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    Here is their first time to set foot on the ground, and of course they are finding all kinds of things.
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    Dad finally got a chance to build the roosts. Because it's a small space, I wanted it off the ground and easy to clean under.
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    And here is the man who made this vision of mine possible. My husband, carpenter extraordinaire, in my opinion!

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  1. Shannys Girls
    Don't have any worry of dogs, ours are kept in a separate gated area and our yard is fenced. But, I have been concerned about coons & opossums. I know they come into our yard. So are you saying that I don't need to cover the whole area that is currently chicken wire, with the heavier wire? Just the bottom section? Thanks for the advice & compliments. backyardchickens.com has been so helpful with our adventure in chicken raising. So appreciative for what everyone brings to this site.
  2. applegal
    What a transformation. Just adorable.. your DH does nice work!
  3. Chick Swing
    Beautiful! It looks like it will be easy to keep clean. and they have alot of room. Well Done!
    Adding the stronger wire along the bottom is good idea, dogs can rip right through the chicken wire.
  4. Chido
    Beautiful! I'm a bit concerned about the chicken wire you are using, though. It is called that because it's meant to keep chickens out of any area you don't want them to go, but it's too weak and easily ripped by a raccoon or opossum. If you can, try attaching a couple feet of 1/2" welded wire on top of the one you already have to reinforce it.
  5. One Chick Two
    Really nice. try sprinkling some oatmeal in your yogurt- your chickies would love it! : )
  6. desertegg
  7. Sam3 Abq
    Great to hear - that is in our plans for our 1st coop in the spring 2014. I also like the varied flock you have (we plan to have 7 different hens) . Thank you for sharing !
  8. Shannys Girls
    So far, I love having the sand. Very easy to clean up. Thanks for the feedback. ( :
  9. Sam3 Abq
    Very nice - well thought out, efficient, handsome and recycled beginnings. How is the sand in the run and roost house working ?

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